Modern digital cinema cameras sporting GUI’s and touch screens have become so intuitive and easy to learn that a brand new owner rarely takes the time to read a user’s manual or watch a tutorial video. But if you want your first shots to be their utmost best, there are a few things you’ll be glad you know. I’ll outline them very quickly here, so you can get to shooting:

  1. All ISO’s are not created equal. There are two native ISO’s for this camera, 400 and 3200. They reportedly deliver the highest dynamic range compared to all other ISO settings, but the dynamic range in this camera is excellent at all ISO’s.
  2. You should use “shutter angle” and not “shutter speed” for controlling your shutter. And unless you’ve got a special look you’re trying to go for, you should leave it set at 180 degrees for all frame speeds.
  3. You will not see the option for 120fps when dialing up your off-speed frame rate, unless you have the “cropped sensor” setting selected. This setting will effectively double your lens focal length.
  4. You can instantly adjust audio levels by tapping the VU meters in the lower right corner of the screen.
  5. The camera can run on a crazy range of input voltage, from 10.8v to 20v, so battery options abound. I use a 14.4 V-mount juice Box and it runs for hours and hours.
  6. The camera records well on SD cards and C-Fast cards but a compact external hard drive like the Wise USB SSD or the Samsung T5 are the way to go for economy and instant editing. (Unless of course your rig needs to be really lean) Also, beware that running an external drive eats up batteries faster.
  7. You can swipe the on screen info away for a clean look at what you’re recording by swiping down quickly. There are a few new touch screen bells and whistles, swipe around and see what happens.
  8. The Metabones Speedbooster for the original BMPCC will not work on the Pocket 4K. However, the Ultra and XL models work great. And a new model specifically for the BMP4KCC is in the works.